AL320G Lathe - The Big Clean

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joco-nz

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A new Chinese built lathe seems to mean a big clean up. Before starting on this I did a check with Machinery House, the NZ wing of the AU Hare & Forbes, and they informed me the head is cleaned, oiled and run up before shipping. So the focus will be on the ways, saddle, cross-slide, top-slide (aka compound) and tail stock.

This being a bit of a learning experience I'm taking things slow and steady. So to start with I sourced some White Spirits (it seems to less "nasty" than Kerosene), a big pack of cheap toilet paper and a couple of large aluminium roasting trays to act as washing tubs and a spray bottle to apply the white spirits. As of writing I think I will pop in to Bunnings and get a Bag-of-Rags and some chip-brushes.

On the lubrication front I read the manual, read the forums, checked some Youtube videos listened to some advice from some people and settled on:
Helix 20W oil (essentially SAE20)
Lanox MX4

I used the SAE20 oil for lubrication on all the oil points per the lather manual and the MX4 is used as a general rust inhibitor on all the metal surfaces. As I'm a about 400m from the sea as the crow flys I need to be a little paranoid on the rust stopping front.


Anyway, some pics of the top-slide.

The reassembled slide after cleaning. There is still some discolouration were the tool post sits. Not sure how to get rid of that, it doesn't seem to want to move even after a scrub with a brass bristled brush.
Top-Slide - 1.jpg

View under the slide. You can see a couple of areas where the casting has what I believe are minor flows. The small void on the base that mates with the cross slide is the only potential issue of the two flaws. However given how small it is (probably under 2% if not 1% of the whole area) I doubt that is a problem.
Top-Slide - 2.jpg

A view of where the lead screw/bearing/handle assembly mounts. You can see the gib, screw and alignment pin holes. The screw hole beside the gib is VERY close to the edge. Hopefully that's not going to cause an issue down stream. No idea if it should be a warranty discussion of if that's "just how its built".
Top-Slide - 3.jpg

Next step is to do some adjustment of the gibs and see how smooth I can get things. It will also let me know if I need to do some form or lapping at a later date. i.e if things are stiff at different points on the slide travel.
 

Blogwitch

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J,

I personally think you are making a grave mistake by not using a 68 grade slideway oil.
In a couple of years I think you may as well forget about the rust problems as your ways will be badly worn by then.

There are oils for almost every application, and slideway oil is a specially prepared product, as I explained in an earlier post.
There are wives tales of using motor oil, STP mixed with goodness knows what and dealers who just can't be bothered to look up the correct lubricants for machinery like ours, some detergent oils are even capable of removing zinc from any brass or maybe even phos bronze parts on your lathe, so it is actually a minefield where you can actually do real damage by using the wrong stuff.

You should be able to get the correct oils from almost any good oil supplier, and if your lathe supplier doesn't stock it, then they don't know what they are talking about and aren't worth trading with as all they will be is box shifters.

This is just a normal tool dealer in the UK, and they know what you should be using. Half way down the page, and a small bottle should last at least a year, so not expensive, FOR THE CORRECT OIL YOU SHOULD BE USING.

http://www.chronos.ltd.uk/acatalog/Oils.html


John
 
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goldstar31

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John is quite correct. I use 100 grade sideways lube and ISO32
Hydraulic oil. Again, I use lard oil.
My supplies are got in 5 litre containers from the local firm who supplies industry
Probably the little men buy from them!
It's bit like buying wine in restaurants
Norman
 

joco-nz

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Gents - I'm not deliberately ignoring your advice just to ignore it. There is however plenty of altarrnative perspective ou there with a decade or more of successful use, using non industry slideway oil with no decernable wear on these small lathes. I think the key being small size compared to a bigger and heavier machine. Ie one weighing in and 500+kg compared to mine at 280kg.

Having said that, Im not using the lath yet and switching to a specialist ways oil isnt a problem to do. Finding it in NZ in hobbiest quantities is a different kettle of fish. Pretty mich everyone sells in 20+ litre containers who have an online presence. The local engineering suppliers dont open in the weekend and unsurprisingly arent going to broach a container to sell me a litre of the stuff. That same "opening" and size problem exists for anyone selling other specialist oils. You either get what the car focused sellers have or you are a bit stuffed.

Anyway this is the best option I found, http://tradetools.co.nz/products/2831295 , if I go down the specialist oil path.
The only oil the lathe supplier has which meets the manuls ISO 46 spec is: https://www.machineryhouse.co.nz/O002

Cheers,
James.
 

XD351

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That is why i switched to chain bar oil !
It has a tackiness similar to way oil and the viscosity is similar .
Switching from a lubricant like sae 20 etc to way oil or bar oil the difference is noticeable as way oil is designed to stay there and motor oil is designed to wash out .
 

joco-nz

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That is why i switched to chain bar oil !
It has a tackiness similar to way oil and the viscosity is similar .
Switching from a lubricant like sae 20 etc to way oil or bar oil the difference is noticeable as way oil is designed to stay there and motor oil is designed to wash out .
Yup - plenty of that about in various sized containers. Supercheap Auto, Bunnings, Mitre10 all have it.
 

joco-nz

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So continuing the clean. Working on the cross slide, taken off the saddle.

"Dirty" condition. You can see some rust staining on the gib and slide.
Top-Slide - 1.jpg

Top-Slide - 2.jpg

Nicely cleaned up. Good oil channel in place.
Top-Slide - 3.jpg

Top-Slide - 4.jpg

Top-Slide - 5.jpg

Top-Slide - 6.jpg
 

joco-nz

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So pulled the cross slide off. All good yeah? Wrong. I didn't cotton on to the fact there is a gear that goes on the cross slide lead screw for the power feed. All very logical when you see it. Not so good when you see it after its fallen through the bottom of the saddle <<string of favourite colourful sailor language inserted here>>. :fan: :wall:

So ... now I have to take the whole saddle off so I can get it up on a bench and figure out how to get this gear back in place.

Plus side, I'm learning a heck of a lot about my lathe cose I'm having to pull it apart WAY more than I ever planned.

The saddle in all its mocking glory.
Top-Slide - 1.jpg

The offending gear. :mad:
Top-Slide - 2.jpg

The lead screw on which is needs to go inside saddle, see the gear key for where it sits on the the shaft.
Top-Slide - 3.jpg
 

bazmak

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If this is your first lathe then your stripping down as far as you can is the best thing you can do at this stage.Also your thoughts on way oil are to my mind correct
On a heavy duty lathe working hard for 50yrs or so in a large engineering workshop then yes I would give thought to using the correct Way oil
However for a home based model engineer, to start with any lube oil will not cause problems.If further down the line you get a chance to change to the correct oil,then do it.When I stripped down my small sc2 as you have done
I also took off any obviouse burrs and also cleaned the casting areas to the u,side and gave a coat of hammerite paint.Mainly cosmetic but its therapeutic
with your new acquisition.ENJOY and keep us posted lots of photos
You Mentioned living on the coast,i also do and use a piece of old heavy curtain to cover the lathe when not in use
Helps stop moisture condensing and hence surface rust
PS while its stripped down check the oiling points are not blocked
Check also the gib strips.i ran an endmill over the dimples to ensure the screws push horizontal and do not twist the gib
 

dennisa49

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Good day,
A tiny thought, right size for me.
Something you wish to consider is that hydraulic fluid is primarily
designed to transmit power rather than as a full time lubricant.
Prossibly not a consideration in this application thought.
Regards,
Dennis
 

joco-nz

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Good day,
A tiny thought, right size for me.
Something you wish to consider is that hydraulic fluid is primarily
designed to transmit power rather than as a full time lubricant.
Prossibly not a consideration in this application thought.
Regards,
Dennis
True and a very reasonable point. Having read the expected usage on this specific oil it seems to also cover basic lubrication. From what I understand, many hydraulic systems these general purpose oils are designed for expect the oil to also lubricate the pump. They just tend to be not designed for high heat environments like engines. They also tend to not have detergents in them like car oil as allowing water to be suspended in the hydraulic fluid seems to be regarded as "bad' (tm).

But even if I don't have the right oil to start with and I experiment a bit to get a good oil combination I am comfortable with I think ANY oil is better than NO oil. :thumbup:

Cheers,
J.
 

joco-nz

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So ... the story continues, in a galaxy far far away ... there was gear, all alone and lost wanting to return to its saddle home.

Errr ... okay, back to reality and pictures since they tend to help a lot. And we ALL like pictures.

So getting the saddle off should be easy right? Just remove the mount of the lead screw at the end of the bed, pull off the saddle. Wrong! Cose I have power feed on both the saddles axis its NOT that simple. There is a worm gear that the lead screw goes through, this is what always spins with the lead screw and transmits power via a gear train in the saddle. A simple clutch moves said power between the different drives (the rack on the bed or the cross slide lead screw). The thing is this worm drive is fixed to the main lead screw vis a pin and a groove (see pic). This groove does NOT go all the way to the tail stock end. So it WONT SLIDE OFF. :eek: :wall:

After much muttering I found in the component diagrams what I needed to unscrew so that this part was no longer tied to the saddle.
Top-Slide - 1.jpg

The result - removed saddle. YAH! :thumbup:
Top-Slide - 2.jpg

So after turning the saddle on its back to get at the underside, and using the magic hook of manouvering I managed to get the gear into place and threaded onto the cross slide lead screw.
Top-Slide - 6.jpg

Pic's show it deep at the bottom. Its the gear that is hidden by the larger one which has moved over through the clutch in the second of the two pics below. Question, what type of clutch is this anyway? Or is it even a clutch?
Top-Slide - 4.jpg

Top-Slide - 3.jpg

So SUCCESS! As a result our fearless adventurer has earned the ultimate reward ... BEER! :thumbup: :rolleyes:
Top-Slide - 5.jpg

Cheers,
James.
 

goldstar31

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Good day,
A tiny thought, right size for me.
Something you wish to consider is that hydraulic fluid is primarily
designed to transmit power rather than as a full time lubricant.
Prossibly not a consideration in this application thought.
Regards,
Dennis
Surprisingly, Nuto 32 is the recommended oil for My ford's. Years ago I checked and read the risk of front bearings on the Super 7 and the Glacier bearings on the 7 risked undue were if not used. Nuto 32 is hydraulic oil!
I've used it for rather longer than most have lived.
On that happy thought, have a nice day
 

joco-nz

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You Mentioned living on the coast,i also do and use a piece of old heavy curtain to cover the lathe when not in use. Helps stop moisture condensing and hence surface rust
Yup - very good idea. I'm trying to source some old thermal backed curtains.

PS while its stripped down check the oiling points are not blocked
Yup - doing that. Making sure I can see where the oil goes as much as that it flows.

Check also the gib strips.i ran an endmill over the dimples to ensure the screws push horizontal and do not twist the gib
I don't have a mill yet. Middle of October for my BF20LV to turn up. :thumbup:

But I can see myself slowly improving and tweaking the base machine over time.
 

Wizard69

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While somebody already pointed it out you need to be careful about motor oils. The detergents in them will damage certain types of plain bearings. This isn't theoretical.

As for way oil, anything is probably better than nothing. Cast iron doesn't suffer like certain brass compounds do with oil additives. You would however want to avoid the very heavy gear oils.

As for way oil in New Zealand, this sounds like a business opportunity. Buy a 33 gal drum and decant to resell. Or just import a pallet load of one quart containers, mark the price up 200% and profit. Become the Little Machine Shop of New Zealand.
 

goldstar31

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It's all hyperbole! There is a ruder expression but I checked NZ on an Limey laptop and found 3 lots of slideways oil and there was a another site before annoyance returned me to my coffee.

Digitum Extractum!
 

joco-nz

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Got things mostly reassembled back onto the lathe other than the top slide. Everything oiled up and sliding nicely.

assempled-saddle and top slide - 1.jpg

On the ways oil front we have a decision to step forward with. It's based on a mix of pragmatisim, chatting/listening to local advice and finally flicking my Kiwi "number 8 wire" switch. We are running with Chain/Bar Oil. It's designed to deal with dirty environments and lubricate a component that is not hot (like an engine). Its "sticky" so it won't slide off the ways. From what I can tell it also doesn't have detergent in it. The stuff I have is blue, I mean not just blue its FECKING BLUE!!
 

joco-nz

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It's all hyperbole! There is a ruder expression but I checked NZ on an Limey laptop and found 3 lots of slideways oil and there was a another site before annoyance returned me to my coffee.

Digitum Extractum!
I found sites as well, selling 5L or larger quantities at $50 and rising. If you managed to find someone selling in 1L quantities at circa $20 (incl delivery) that deliver then awesome. Please post the links.

At the moment some chain/bar oil (as used by others) on sale for $11 for 1L wins the day until I run out.

Cheers,
james.
 

goldstar31

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I buy 5 litres at a time------and have done for more years than I care to recall.

I did economics, cost accountancy and a lot of things that are recorded on worthless certificates lost in drawers somewhere.
Out of it all is the fact that Wizard 69 makes clear is that the mark up on small quantities is colossal.

Perhaps Penny wise, pound foolish should be the thought for the day.

??????????

Norman
 
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